With an eye on social, Microsoft is reportedly in discussions to acquire Yammer for over $1 billion.
“A deal may be reached as soon as tomorrow,” reports Bloomberg, citing sources. “Adding Yammer would help Microsoft … add social-networking tools to the suite of products it offers corporate customers.”
“Yammer is used primarily as a tool for group communication and collaboration within companies and started off life looking very much like an early version of Facebook,” writes The Verge. “Unlike Mark Zuckerberg's creation, however, Yammer proudly proclaims itself ‘the enterprise social network’ and offers no pretense of competing in the casual socialization stakes.”
As such, “Buying Yammer would … thrust Microsoft into the hot market for social-enterprise tools -- putting it in competition with Salesforce.com, Yammer's archnemesis,” Business Insider writes.
The reports come in the wake of Salesforce dropping $745 million on Buddy Media, and Oracle buying Vitrue and Collective Intellect -- both of which analyze data on social-media sites.
“Yammer is sort of like Facebook for companies: employees can post, share, and discuss items,” CNet explains. “It's become an integral tool for many startups, but it's also big among larger businesses. More than 80 percent of Fortune 500 companies use Yammer.”
As such, “Outwardly Yammer has looked to be the most promising of the social enterprise software players not named Jive,” notes AllThingsD. “If Microsoft proves to be the buyer, then it would [give] the Windows and office giant a key piece of technology to offer its enterprise customers.
“The question, as always, is what Microsoft would do with the new company and technology,” according to VentureBeat. “If, like Skype, the relationship is arms-length, and Yammer continues to grow, this could be a positive for both companies.”